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Why not WAV?

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Twill's picture
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I've made the foolish mistake of having both Apple and alternative eco systems trying to coexist in my house, which poses the time honoured question: which music format to choose?

I've messed around with various ways of playing FLAC on the iPhone etc, but not being native, none are ultimately that simple. My library is currently in FLAC format but my wife still uses Windows.

Which all begs the question: why not just use WAV?

Is there any good reason - apart from file size and therefore storage - not to just transcode everything from FLAC back in to good old fashioned WAV, which plays on everything?

Am I missing something here? I realise I won't get much WAV on my 32GB iPhone, but apart from that... are there any other issues? And with apps like Synology's DS Audio out there, is storage on portables such an issue now?

Cheers.

The_Lhc's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

WAV doesn't support tagging particularly well, so all that nice info you get with each track will mostly disappear. It also requires more bandwidth if you're streaming wirelessly, so could be more prone to speed drops due to interference.

fr0g's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

Lack of metadata. Artist name etc.

If you use dbPoweramp to rip, you can download a plugin that rips to 2 formats at the same time.

That's what I do.

I have a FLAC and an MP3 copy.

 

If I were you I would rip to MP3 at 320 and a lossless format for archival purposes.

You will not notice any SQ difference between the MP3 and the lossless.

 

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Clare Newsome's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

fr0g wrote:

You will not notice any SQ difference between the MP3 and the lossless.

A 'may' or 'should' would be better than a definitive 'will' there - the OP should make that judgement for themselves Smile

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Alec's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

Just rip to Apple Lossless, then it won't matter if you can hear a difference between WAV and MP3...?

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Alec's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

Actually, sorry, if your wife listens using WMP I'd do as fr0g suggests as, IMO you are unlikely to hear the difference, though by all means verify that for yourself if you feel so inclined.

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RE: Why not WAV?

Clare Newsome wrote:

fr0g wrote:

You will not notice any SQ difference between the MP3 and the lossless.

A 'may' or 'should' would be better than a definitive 'will' there - the OP should make that judgement for themselves Smile

 

Fair enough...

"probably will not"...then? That okay? Wink

 

Interestingly that would be a very good idea for one of your get together things. Comparing WAV, FLAC and high bitrate MP3/AAC.

 

I used to swear I could tell the difference, but I've never been able to do it blind... And of all the tests that do exist on the interweb, this is one I've not seen passed by anyone yet.

 

 

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RE: Why not WAV?

With hard-drive 'real estate' being so cheap these days I see no point in storing music in a lossy format, unless you really need to store bucketloads of albums on your phone. Apple's equivalent is ALAC, or 'Apple Lossless' as it's called in iTunes. Rip your CDs to that, or convert existing WAV rips to that. All current iDevices can play ALAC (and MP3). I store a dozen albums on my iPhone at a time, which I fly-in from my Mac. When I get bored of them I delete them and upload some more. If you feel you need to store more at once, then convert some of your lossless rips to MP3, just for the phone. On a 32GB iPhone you should get loads of albums at 256K MP3.

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RE: Why not WAV?

Twill,

As some of the other posters above have said, the lack of tagging is a major problem. The storage not so much as HD space is cheap. But for convenience sake, I find ALAC the best format so far for me, having tried a few others in the past. ALAC plays nice with iTunes and all Apple hardware and if need be can be burned to disk at full resolution (for the car etc.) to be reconverted to WAV where needed (someone correct me if i am wrong in this assumption!). 

Best of luck with finding your solution. 

TnA

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RE: Why not WAV?

fr0g wrote:

Lack of metadata. Artist name etc.

If you use dbPoweramp to rip, you can download a plugin that rips to 2 formats at the same time.

That's what I do.

I have a FLAC and an MP3 copy.

 

If I were you I would rip to MP3 at 320 and a lossless format for archival purposes.

You will not notice any SQ difference between the MP3 and the lossless.

 

 

I can, and I don't have golden ears by any means....

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Twill's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

Thanks all. Seems like the 'it's staring you straight in the face... WAV is the answer so obvious you couldn't see it' option is out of the window!

Maybe the answer is to buy my wife an iPod touch for her birthday, and then ALAC becomes a winner. Only problem then I guess is that a lot of streaming hardware - should I want such in the future, only handles FLAC, WAV, MP3 etc. It's a shame there's no cross-boundary lossless option that both Apple and the rest of the world love... but then that would be too easy i guess!

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RE: Why not WAV?

Exactly, I am forced to use ALAC even though I am a PC user with no Apple products myself because my wife has an iPhone and I use iTunes at work to share stuff. I really wish Apple had not invented ALAC and just used FLAC like everyone else does, I guess they did it for DRM reasons but as a format it needs not to exist.

Luckily most windows software (JRiver / Foobar etc.) support ALAC because they are nice but Apple / iTunes are evil scum for not supporting FLAC!

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Alec's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

I'd have to suggest trying to stream MP3 to see if you can stand it.

Oh look, I just did.

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quadpatch's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

Were we talking about streaming, what did I miss? 

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RE: Why not WAV?

quadpatch wrote:

Were we talking about streaming, what did I miss? 

Only the possibility that Twill may want to do so in the future.

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HC: Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Humax Foxsat-HDR

Music: Optical out from Asus P7H55-M Motherboard into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers.

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Twill's picture
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RE: Why not WAV?

Thanks all,

Looks like either ALAC - as the Windows environment can cope with it - or MP3 high bit rate is the way to go.

I may start off with ALAC, and then if it's impractical try a dual library approach as suggested.

I am aware of the question marks over lossless vs MP3 question, and don't want to kick that can of worms all over the forum again, but for me it's like a single malt, or decent bottle of red, or any other aesthetic experience; whether the difference is there or not, I choose to believe, and I enjoy it more and sleep easier for knowing that I've done the best I can!